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35,000 People Affected by Food in Jorhat District in Assam

Guwahati: The water level of the Bhogdoi river continued to rise as turbulent waters breached an embankment in lower Gayan Gaon under Dhekorgorha block of Jorhat, Assam, inundating more than 60 villages and causing large-scale destruction to crops, individual properties, cattle and livestock.

Over 35,000 people of more than 20 villages in Malowkhat area under Jorhat west revenue circle have been affected by a fresh wave of flood on Friday. Sources said 100 metres of the embankment was washed away by the surging waters along with large number of bamboo and beetle nut trees at Namoni Gayon Gaon, about 5 km from Jorhat town. Hundreds of families have been rendered homeless due to the flooding. The surging waters also submerged Malowkhat, Randhonijan, Borveti, Ghorfolia, Dagaon and Senchowa Gaon.

The Jorhat district administration has sounded high alert in areas located along the Bhogdoi as the river is flowing above the danger level. Jorhat Deputy Commissioner RA Karoti said five relief camps have been opened by the administration at several places in Malowkhat for the flood victims. “Over 1,000 people have taken shelter in the relief camps so far,” she said, adding, “As per reports received this afternoon, about 35,000 people of 20 villages have been affected by floods so far in the district.”

A rescue team of the NDRF was pressed into service and the DC in-charge is supervising the overall rescue operation. A bridge constructed by the PWD was also washed away at Bogoriguri where the flood waters submerged schools, houses, roads, bridges and vast tracts of agricultural fields.

According to reports, one person was reportedly drowned near the Pujadoobi Ghat situated in the town. The NDRF team was on its mission to find the missing person.

Meanwhile, Water Resources minister Keshab Mahanta said he has asked all MLAs to submit a report to him regarding the status of flood-control measures in their constituencies. “I have got some. Some are yet to give me their reports. Once I get the reports, we expect to start work on them by October,” Mahanta said.

Official sources said that though an amount of Rs 65 crore was earmarked in last year’s budget for maintenance and repair of the embankments, only Rs 10 crore was released to the department. “The department has limited funds which exhausts after paying the salaries and carrying out the maintenance works. If we have to take up new schemes, we need help from agencies like World Bank and NABARD,” Mahanta said.

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